Neurosurgical Procedures

Surgery may be the best option for some children with neurological conditions. When you come to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, your child is in caring and capable hands.

Our internationally recognized pediatric neurosurgeons use sophisticated techniques, some of which are not widely available at other centers. Our reputation for excellence helps more children recover quickly and achieve outstanding results.

Pediatric Neurosurgical Procedures: Why Choose Us

Children’s Hospital is home to some of the nation’s foremost pediatric neurosurgeons. Our experience performing a high volume of specialized procedures leads to safe, precise care that improves patient outcomes.

Our experts also advance neurosurgical care for children worldwide through research, leadership and medical education. Neurosurgeons work alongside other Children’s Hospital pediatric specialists to coordinate presurgical testing, surgery, follow-up care and ongoing therapies.

Leading Neurosurgical Technologies

We use the latest technologies to diagnose, plan and perform surgical procedures for your child. These include: 

  • Stereoelectroencephalography (sEEG) is a procedure to identify where seizures come from in a child’s brain. sEEG enables our surgeons to use minimally invasive techniques for safely implanting electrodes and accurately identify where seizures arise.
  • Stereotactic laser ablation (SLA), or laser interstitial thermal ablation (LITT) is a minimally invasive procedure using computers and advanced MRI imaging techniques. We use LITT to place a laser fiber that treats abnormal tissue that may cause seizures and small brain tumors.
  • ROSA is a form of robotic surgical assistance that allows our neurosurgeons to target specific areas in the brain with high precision. Studies have shown that surgeries performed using robotic assistance significantly reduce procedure time. This means less time under anesthesia for your child. The benefits of robotic assistance also include smaller incisions, lower infection risks, reduced post-procedure pain and shorter hospital stays.
  • NeuroPace® Responsive Neurostimulation (RNS) is a form of neuromodulation for epilepsy. It acts like a pacemaker for the brain to detect and stop seizures before they start. RNS is an emerging and highly effective therapy for pediatric epilepsy.
  • Fetal myelomeningocele (open spina bifida) repair closes neural tube defects before birth, while a baby is still in the womb. A team from Children’s Hospital and USC is one of few in the country offering this fetoscopic approach. Fetoscopic repair has been shown to be safer for expectant mothers, while retaining the benefits of traditional open fetal repair for the baby.
  • Endoscopic craniosynostosis repair is a less invasive alternative to traditional open surgery. This procedure safely treats young children (usually less than 4 months of age) with abnormal fusion of the bony sutures of the skull, a condition known as craniosynostosis. Advantages include less blood loss and need for blood transfusion, shorter operative time and shorter hospitalizations.
  • Endoscopic third ventriculostomy offers certain children with hydrocephalus a chance to avoid lifelong dependence on a shunt. Using a guided endoscope within the fluid-filled spaces (ventricles) of the brain, our surgeons create a pathway for fluid to escape the ventricles and be reabsorbed naturally. 

Pediatric Neurosurgery: Conditions We Care For

We care for children of all ages with neurological conditions such as:

  • Arachnoid cysts
  • Brachial plexus injury
  • Brain and spinal cord tumors
  • Brain and spinal cord injuries
  • Chiari malformation 
  • Craniosynostosis, both simple and complex
  • Congenital anomalies of the brain and spinal cord
  • Degenerative spine disease
  • Epilepsy
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Peripheral nerve injuries and disorders
  • Plagiocephaly
  • Spasticity
  • Spina bifida and myelomeningocele
  • Tethered spinal cord
  • Vascular disorders including arteriovenous malformations, aneurysms, cavernous malformations and moyamoya disease